My newest feature animation has been released! 

Watch it here:

Gildedguy vs Bog

Read my WIP post on this animation.

At last!

.

I usually do a blog post like these to reflect on the project, for my own sake. I didn’t make one for INVINCIBILITY KNIGHT because I only spent a single month on it. This one took place over the course of 9 months. So if you’re curious about what was going through my head while making Gildedguy vs Bog (and part of Invincibility Knight), read on!

Hey Michael, what took ya?

You *specfically* said you were going to try to finish this animation faster than your other ones!

Why did it end up taking even longer?!

I can answer that question! It’s not a very insightful answer, but I’ll give the age old excuse: life “got in the way.”

Moved out of my parents place.

November. It was about time, and I didn’t want to burden my mum and dad any more. The actual logistics of moving all yer crap into a new place is tedious. Readjusting to living on my own too (cooking, chores, shopping, bills).

Participated in the Twitch Animation Contest.

Log started: 1/31/2017 4:11:08 PM
[7:32:16 PM] steelanim: hey GildedGuy :D did you see the twitch animation contest?
[7:33:46 PM] Gildedguy: Twitch animation comp?
[7:33:57 PM] steelanim: https://blog.twitch.tv/twitch-animation-contest-with-a-9-000-prize-pool...
[7:34:37 PM] Gildedguy: oooo sht
[7:34:44 PM] Gildedguy: February 24
[7:34:46 PM] Gildedguy: Whata deadline
[7:34:57 PM] Minish23: That's a tight deadline tbh
[7:35:06 PM] ninjasonic_102: One month
[7:35:11 PM] AquaBooster: That's like 1 month.
[7:35:13 PM] brobtherob: one month for a 9,000 prize. . .
[7:35:25 PM] Gildedguy: Ill look into this, thanks for showing me @steelanim

All of February. This was a snap opportunity that I decided to jump on. I was literally in the middle of working on Bog, when one of my stream’s viewers told me about the animation contest. Since the contest was already a week in, and the deadline was really short, I dropped what I was doing and pumped out INVINCIBILITY KNIGHT, hoping I would win at least an honorable mention. Luckily, I won first place, decisively making this gamble worth the shot.

A funny story about that animation.

 

The ending was originally going to be quite generic, with our gamer just determinedly grimacing and pressing START:

I was committed to that ending throughout the whole 3-week rush of the project, until I got a glimpse of some of my competition. Some of the entries I saw were beautifully animated, and technically stronger than my own.

Doubt kicked in. You know how you have this gut reaction to online content? Like, in even a few seconds, you can kind of judge the quality of an entire video.

I knew I had a decent climax to my story, but after checking out my “opponents”, I knew I needed more.

The day I had to animate that ending sequence , I got up and literally started pacing. This is one of the few times I somehow ushered a “light bulb” moment out of myself. I distinctly remember the despair:

The ending with our gamer suddenly getting determined was just too cliche. My creation is polished, but it’s just another mediocre story. It’s just not good enough. Hmm. I’ve wasted the past month chasing prize money. I should’ve continued on Bog.

I felt very similar to the gamer, just…down on myself. Pitiable!


I review the animation I had already done.
Gildedguy is running though the obstacles and, as planned in my story, he keeps coming back.

He gets busted up by a hazard. He emerges from his own shattered armor.
He gets shot at by some arrows. He appears again, right behind his old body.


*ding*

Eureka! Just have a new, determined gamer appear right behind our defeated gamer!
That way we reuse the “die to instant revive” motif I established throughout the story!
This ending made a lot more thematic sense, and I was elated I discovered it in time.

Became severely sick.

All of March/Early April. Flu-like illness kept me out of action the whole time. You guys can blame my roommate, Hang, for infecting me with whatever god awful virus he got from his workplace (my old workplace coincidentally). I spent entire days just sitting still, trying to adjust my air passages to breathe clearly. Snot for days. Soup for days.

Living in a non-air-conditioned basement didn’t help either.

So I hope you’ll forgive me for not getting anything done in March.

It wasn’t pretty. It was ugly.

It was pretty ugly.

Freelance work.

All of May. Part of June. I took on a ton of freelance work all at once, because I felt obliged. I avoid delaying my own art for the sake of others’ projects, but this time the request came from someone I do respect and admire: Lachhh, cofounder of Berzerk Studio! He has made some of the net’s greatest Flash game hits such as Berzerk Ball, Sands of the Colosseum, and recently, Zombidle.

Fun fact: I was kind of salty that Berzerk Ball 2, a 2012 “toss game” like my own Slush Invaders Game, was much more popular, polished, and fun. The extra sodium came in when I was tasked with animating a promo FOR Berzerk Ball during my time with Bored.com…grumble.

Lachhh has also done a video series (which I thoroughly enjoyed in college) about independent game development.

Then there’s his open-source app, LachhhTools. It’s a live streaming alert app that enables users to use their own custom Flash animations (instead of the canned ones you’d find on StreamLabs, Muxy, or NightDev). Here’s one I made for UncleBourbone’s channel:

Lachhh essentially boxed up his own alert overlay and made it free to use. How generous!
If only he were so generous before I decided to make such an overlay from scratch…grumble grumble.

He asked me if I could take on animation commissions for streamers utilizing LachhhTools…and I couldn’t refuse! This guy has given so much stuff to the Flash Game and Twitch communities, stuff I’ve personally benefited from.

Lachhh also asked me if I could help design a level for his new game, Just Shapes & Beats. And so by agreeing, this marks the second time I’m doing freelance work for a Berzerk Studio game…grumble grumble grumble.

An aside: Since dropping myself into this independent career path I’ve noticed an unexpected, yet inevitable (I guess) trend. In a slow, organic way, my work has been noticed more and more by people I revere. First it was awesome animators like Hyun and others of the Stick Fight community, then animators from the golden age of Newgrounds (Egoraptor, Rubberninja, Adam Phillips). Now some of the new, popular YouTubers know about lil’ ol’ Gildedguy (JaidenAnimations, TheOdd1sOut).

So that’s why.

Where I would normally work consistently for 5-6 months straight on a project, this animation took 9 months, 3 of which were not even related to the project. This made it more difficult, since each time I had to take a hiatus from Bog, I had to “get back into the rhythm” of work.

One very nice thing was that I received little “nagging” from fans about Gildedguy vs Bog coming out. This is a good sign that I have their trust. I do hope the fruits of my labor show that I didn’t betray that trust.

Or maybe no one nagged because I took so long that they all forgot about it. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

The actual production of Gildedguy vs Bog

Jonathan Blow (creator of Braid) said that a good long-term project ought to “change you” by the end of it. Mmm, I can’t say I’ve undergone any paradigm shifts like last year, but I’ve definitely gained more experience being alone.

It is difficult for me to admit, but I, Michael Moy, spend a LOT of my waking hours by myself. It is even harder to admit that I do this by choice.

It hasn’t been a big deal in the past because I could at least see my family, friends, and colleagues on a day to day basis. Then everything changed when the decision-to-quit-normal-society-and-stable-job-nation attacked.

I moved out and embarked on this project in November. Since then, I pretty much only see my roommates for an hour or two in the evenings (they work proper 9-5’s like sane people). The other 23 hours, I’m all by myself! Well, there’s the dog but you can only pet that thing for so long.

A common sense solution would be to just get out more, meet people, etc. Which I have no excuse for not doing. I could totally do that, and should probably do it more. But I don’t. Nobody really does.

Queue more grumbling.

It’s okay though, because I’ve gotten used to this type of isolation. After awhile, and many months of internal grumbling and lonely whining, you just kind of give up on your outer persona. The reality of being on your own becomes very apparent.

Whenever thoughts go “Grumble grumble, this sucks, I’m not happy.”
Time and time again, the room is silent. As if the universe were saying “Yeah, and…?”

What are you gonna do? Argue with a wall?

All one can do is look around, feel the empty space and go:

“Welp, looks like I’m just a guy after all!”

Sounds sad, but the delirium becomes kind of glorious! Being lonely just becomes silly.

Not to overly romanticize what seems negative, but I think there is value in feeling so invisible, that you take yourself far less seriously.

And when you do meet up with people, it is incredibly refreshing.

What does that have to do with the actual production of Gildedguy vs Bog tho

The actual production of Gildedguy vs Bog, was, practically speaking, not very exciting. There weren’t any notable new techniques I employed, and the style is mainly a rough evolution of what I did for Basement Busk and INVINCIBILITY KNIGHT. All other improvements to the visual quality was achieved by intuition – I haven’t reflected on how I did them yet.

What I found I improved on was more on the conceptual and storytelling side of things. The animation relates to what was described above about being on your own, but not exactly. I don’t want to say the exact theme of the animation, since I want my stuff to speak for itself now.

What you hear is on you!

That is, I hope viewers can draw insightful connections from it for themselves.

Just don’t get too crazy on the fan-theory.

Next Project

I’m 90% sure I want to go all-in on one of my more ambitious projects. I’ve been slowly building up my side-skills for the past year in preparation. It’s terrifying, but even more exciting how it may turn out. I want to stream the entire development, spoilers and all, but I’m still not sure if that’s a good idea. Got some more preparation to do.

If I can pull it off, the final product will be HOURS of entertainment, not just 6 minute short films!

You can get a hint of what the next project will be just like how Gildedguy vs Bog was teased. Just look at the post-credits scenes very carefully.

On a final note, I am enjoying all the detailed feedback the new animation is getting!

Thanks for reading!

(◙◙)

 

 

 

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23 thoughts on “Gildedguy vs Bog is Out in the Wild!

  1. I noticed your lines have been getting more and more thin throughout Gilded’s stories and Invincibility Knight. I dunno what that has to do with anything but i thought it was kinda funny how your lines started getting more and more thin the more practice you have with your style. lol.

  2. I just want to say that the animation was AWESOME and, at least in my opinion, you are the best animator! And just considering that someone that learned to animate by yourself and alone do extremelly high quality animation as yours in 6 mounths is incredible, you’re just an inspiration for me!

  3. Oooooo ok ok what I thought was the meaning of this anim:

    This is an awesome animation, but in my mind it’s also a metaphor for dealing with criticisms and keeping motivated. Let me explain.
    GG is on a quest to find his follow his dreams, his motivation (the star). On that journey, he looks into himself, and finds the fear that people will not like his work (kid, jade, slush turning away from him). Then he starts getting criticism from himself and others, (Bog is criticisms) and at first he tries to just keep them at bay, but slowly he starts losing his way. For a moment, his motivation (the star) gives him the strength to fight back, but it isn’t the true solution. As he loses hope, he once again looks into himself and realises that he has to let the criticisms in, and take them to heart. (Gildedguy vs ggarmour) He eventually makes peace with the critisisms, and continues to create content better than before, having learned from this (when he returns home, looks at his hurt hands and glove, dons his armour and begins drawing).

    … I copy pasted this from my comment on youtube …

  4. Frankly, it was both, I forgot you were doing it, and I trusted you. When it finally got realeased it was a pretty happy surprise! I thoroughly enjoyed it, though I still have trouble understanding the story as far as metaphors and even just basic, “what are Gildedguy’s abilities and powers over all and how does this affect him in the stick fighter world?”, kinda stuff. Like I get the idea that the Star and the magic pen and his soul are all connected, giving strength to each other, but I wouldn’t know. Over all, I am amazed at your work and you didnmt need an excuse to take a while. Good work takes time. On top of that, sometimes you just have to push the chair back, take a break, and give some time to your life and other things. I think anyone can relate. Heck I’m not even a real animator (Yet!) and I know that. I will say, everyone deals with stuff in different ways, and me, being the strange person I am, cannot stand silence, or being alone, for any period of time. I get paranoid. I once started searching my own home with a meat cleaver in my hand, checking every room twice to make sure nothing was there. Crazy stuff like that. True story. To be fair it was a steak knife and I really was alone. Frankly I would have been more scared to be the “something there” in that situation come to think of it. Moving on… I guess I just deal differently, but as much as I understand the value of some alone time, time I can even enjoy, I still can’t stand it unless I know someone is nearby. I guess I’m just a needy person. Any advice on how to get over strange paranoia and phobias of being lonely?

    • I’m curious about this huge project you are planning to work on, I mean like HOURS OF FUN you said. how are you gonna do that? I am exited to see how it would turn out, but my concern is, how long would it take? if you want the animation to be an hour long it would at least take a year or so, and that’s with a crew. and if it does take that long or longer what animations would fill in between the animation so your content wont be hanging? so yeh I am exited for this.

  5. Okay, so, in the end credits, the star in the sky flickers, but as it does, it briefly becomes some sort of symbol, hexagonal, or perhaps a cube standing on its corner. Bright cyan, with a darker “core” in the center. I myself don’t recognize this symbol; I’m not super involved in communities like those Bog and Jade originate from, and I’ve been following GildedGuy’s work only since vs. Jade. Does anyone recognize it?

    (I can’t post an image here; just set the YouTube playback speed to .25x and try to pause it on a flicker.)

    • Im not completely sure,but I think it’s Falco’s shine. He said he would be working on a falcomaster3k series, based on the myterious smash character FM3K. He also said that his next series will provide hours of entertainment, and that fits the bill.

      THESE WINGS WERE MADE TO FLYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY

      • By character I mean persona, but nobody know who he is. Anyways, looking at the shape and colouring yeah its definitely a shine. (falco and fox down special).

  6. Also, I’ve said it on the YouTubes VideoNet Service 2017 posting of this project, but this animation is phenomenal. I don’t comment very often, as I personally prefer to comment for the creators, not the viewers, and to be frank, I rarely find a creator who both reads their comments and is someone I want to say something to, but GildedGuy is pretty active in interacting with his userbase, so I’m gonna add something right here on his site proper:

    I do not like stick figure fight animations, as a “genre”, and GildedGuy is an exception. I can’t get invested in two stick characters punching one another in a flat plane for fighting’s sake. I have a lot of respect for the time GildedGuy spends setting the scene for the “main event”, and the character he gives everyone involved without even a single line of dialogue.

    Fights and battles, to me, are so much more enjoyable when there’s heart and character behind them, beyond the extent of, “We’re stoic battlers, let’s fight.” I want to see these characters. I want to see them afraid, and happy, and relaxed, and sad. I want to see them have a full range of emotion. I want to be invested in them, to care about the outcome. Perhaps there is other work in the genre that I’m missing that does exactly this. Do let me know if you know any!

    (Fair warning, it’s occurring to me now that this might run a little long, and a lot of it’s gonna be gushing. Run to escape the saccharine wave, or steel yourself for its impact.)

    I think, though, that GildedGuy is one of the biggest inspirations to me to date, up there with names like Olan Rogers (created a fantastic animation pilot on YouTube that got picked up by a major TV company) and… well, I guess I don’t have many inspirations anymore. Perhaps it helps that GildedGuy resonates with me on multiple levels. In middle school, I started doodling detailed, “formed” stick figures, but I ultimately never did anything with them, only picking up the style once more a few years ago and dropping it again.

    GildedGuy caused me to pick this style back up, because while I have distaste for the stick figure fight genre, I love it conceptually, and I love stick figures from a design perspective. Maybe it’s insignificant or unimportant, but thanks to GildedGuy, I’ve gotten a drive to tell an old type of story I shelved long ago again, working under all those RHG tropes that define it as a genre, but expanded in the interest of a story made of all the heart and depth I love to see in a story.

    I don’t intend to advertise, and won’t say much more. I suppose I just… feel strongly about GildedGuy’s work and the kind of inspiration he is, and I wanted to share, because even though I’m referring to him in the third person, this comment is for him moreso than anyone else. I don’t know who he is as a person, but maybe he’d appreciate being told he’s inspired someone. I, at the least, appreciate being inspired.

    So, uh, I’m at that point where I’d normally keep rambling because I’m not sure how to end off. So I think, instead of doing that, I’ll end off with this: GildedGuy, you are an inspiring, fantastic artist, and your slogan of “shiny art with heart” is spot-on to describe your work. I don’t have much in the ways of spare funds, other than some savings I don’t think it’d be wise for me to dip into, but I want to do something for you, somehow, in some way, and I regret to say that I don’t know what. It doesn’t feel like enough to just make you some fanart.

    Thank you for sharing your work with the world, and keep shining.

  7. Hey gildedguy, I just wanted to say thanks for the wonderful animation that you have given us even though you have bee through a lot of problems as you progress through the production. Keep doing what you’re doing 🙂

  8. I had to watch this anim like 3 times the day you published it and a couple times the next day. It was that good, also, I like how you don’t have any dialogue in these anims, just music and metaphors doubling as entertainment and a way to express feeling and actual meaning if you look deeper into it. There are a few metaphors I didn’t completely get though. Like after the reflection in GG’s sword disrupts his peaceful zone and those…things start reaching out at people he knew. or when Bog gets inside GG and starts destroying, GG’s armor? but it comes back and covers Bog, only to have Bog break it off, then seem frustrated. Then he sits down with GG and they both blow out. Anyway, good anim Gilded, worth the wait and you should feel free to take a nice long break. 🙂

  9. Ok so I’m gonna throw my penny in regarding the metaphor while following what Michael said himself. Note that some of my interpretations will be very literal.
    Michael talks about spending his time being on his own. We see GG sitting in the forest all on his own, being ‘with himself’ while he’s looking at the mirror. While he’s doing music or diving into some chain of thoughts and relaxing, this black aura spreads around him, eating up the forest around him. Now we see that GG is enjoying himself, because he’s doing something he likes, but (whatever that is) requires solitariness and not being disturbed by others, he wraps himself in lonliness, cutting himself off from his environment. He becomes afraid of losing his closest friends for that (1:43), and becoming an ugly maniac who’s been eaten up by lonliness and being left alone forever, to the point that his entire personality might fade away (2:00)
    Then comes Bog. Bog is the entitlement of this bad sickening lonliness. And no matter how hard he fights against it, he can’t overcome it, the lonliness keeps crawling back on him. GG holds to his passion and his dreams (his green pen), he uses his motivations like a light of hope in his dark solitude and make him stronger, but non of his attacks can do anything against the sickness of lonliness. In his attempts he gets infected, and becomes what he was afraid of. His dreams (the star) are gone, his passion and won’t get him anywhere now…

    to be continued

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